The Medaille Trust Fundraising Promise

We manage our income to ensure that it is used to its full advantage in achieving our strategic aims.  However, we recognise that in order to expand and continue our vital work, advice and awareness we need to diversify our income and develop good fundraising streams and supporter networks. We ensure that our fundraising planning reflects our current and future need, and we have clear policies on how we manage our restricted and designated reserves to ensure service continuity. 

Registered with the Fundraising Regulator

Medaille Trust is proud to be registered with the Fundraising Regulator, the independent regulator of charitable fundraising. Being registered to the Fundraising Regulator means we are committed to its Fundraising Promise which outlines our commitment to donors and the public. This means we ensure that our fundraising is legal, open, honest and respectful. The standards for fundraising are set out in the Code of Fundraising Practice.

We will commit to high standards

  • We will adhere to the Fundraising Code of Practice.  
  • We will monitor fundraisers, volunteers and third parties working with us to raise funds, to ensure that they comply with the Code of Fundraising Practice and with this Promise. 
  • We will comply with the law as it applies to charities and fundraising. 
  • We will display the Fundraising Regulator badge on our fundraising material to show we are committed to good practice.
  • We will be clear, honest and open
  • We will tell the truth and we will not exaggerate. 
  • We will do what we say we are going to do with donations we receive. 
  • We will be clear about who we are and what we do. 
  • We will give a clear explanation of how you can make a gift and change a regular donation. 
  • Where we ask a third party to fundraise on our behalf, we will make this relationship and the financial arrangement transparent. 
  • We will be able to explain our fundraising costs and show how they are in the best interests of our cause if challenged. 
  • We will ensure our complaints process is clear and easily accessible. 
  • We will provide clear and evidence-based reasons for our decisions on complaints.

We will be respectful

  • We will respect your rights and privacy. 
  • We will not put undue pressure on you to make a gift. If you do not want to give or wish to cease giving, we will respect your decision. 
  • We will have a procedure for dealing with people in vulnerable circumstances and it will be available on request. 
  • Where the law requires and in compliance with GDPR, we will get your consent before we contact you to fundraise. 
  • If you tell us that you don’t want us to contact, you in a particular way we will not do so. We will work with the Telephone, Mail and Fundraising Preference Services where appropriate to ensure that those who choose not to receive specific types of communication don’t have to.

We will be fair and reasonable

  • We will treat donors and the public fairly, showing sensitivity and adapting our approach depending on your needs. 
  • We will take care not to use any images or words that intentionally cause distress or anxiety. 
  • We will take care not to cause nuisance or disruption to the public.

We will be accountable and responsible 

  • We will manage our resources responsibly and consider the impact of our fundraising on our donors, supporters and the wider public. 
  • If you are unhappy with anything we’ve done whilst fundraising, you can contact us to make a complaint. We will listen to feedback and respond appropriately to compliments and criticism we receive. 
  • We will have a complaints procedure, a copy of which will be available on our website or available on request. 
  • Our complaints procedure will let you know how to contact the Fundraising Regulator if you feel our response is unsatisfactory. 
  • We will monitor and record the number of complaints we receive each year and share this data with the Fundraising Regulator on request.

If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact us via enquires@medaille-trust.org.uk or in writing to: The Medaille Trust, Cathedral Centre, 3 Ford Street, Salford M3 6DP

 


The Medaille Trusts Policy for Fundraising Communications with Vulnerable Supporters

Introduction

To ensure that we take all reasonable care to protect vulnerable adults, Medaille Trust complies with the Institute of Fundraising guidance set out in the document called “Treating Donors Fairly: Responding to The Needs of People in Vulnerable Circumstances and Helping Donors Make Informed Decisions”. Medaille Trust requires its staff and any agencies contacting members of the public on our behalf to comply with guidelines provided by the Direct Marketing Association and the Public Fundraising Regulatory Association. These guidelines do not cover children and young people under the age of 18, and we do not actively seek donations from them.

Medaille Trust undertakes fundraising in order to support projects aimed at those whose lives are affected by sight loss. We aim to communicate with supporters in the ways in which they are most comfortable, and this includes mail, email, SMS, phone and in person.

Every donor is an individual with a unique background, experiences and circumstances – and every interaction between a fundraiser and donor is different. Medaille Trust does not identify vulnerable adults based on broad personal characteristics such as disability or age. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to donate if they are willing and able to do so, and that denying people the chance to give based on appearance, age or behaviour may be considered discriminatory.

It is inevitable that we will come into contact with people who are vulnerable and not able to make informed decisions about their giving. This can happen either through our own communications or through communications from the agencies who work on our behalf. This document outlines how we take all reasonable care to identify supporters who may be vulnerable, and what action we take if we suspect a person is vulnerable.

Complying with regulation and best practice

The Institute of Fundraising General Principles clause 1.2 e) states that: “Fundraisers MUST take all reasonable steps to treat a donor fairly, enabling them to make an informed decision about any donation. This MUST include taking into account the needs of any potential donor who may be in a vulnerable circumstance or require additional care and support to make an informed decision. ii) Fundraisers MUST NOT exploit the credulity, lack of knowledge, apparent need for care and support or vulnerable circumstance of any donor at any point in time.”

The Medaille Trust fundraising abides by the four key principles of the Institute of Fundraising’s “Treating Donors Fairly” policy, which are:

Respect – treating all members of the public respectfully. This means being mindful of, and sensitive to, any particular need that a donor may have. It also means striving to respect the wishes and preferences of the donor, whatever they may be.

Fairness – all donors should be treated fairly. This includes not discriminating against any group or individual based on their appearance or any personal characteristic.

Responsive – this means responding appropriately to the different needs that a donor may have. The onus should be on the fundraiser to adapt his or her approach (tone, language, communication technique) to suit the needs and requirements of the donor.

Accountable – it is up to fundraisers and charities to take responsibility and care to ensure that their fundraising is happening to a high standard. When thinking about ways of communicating with different people and fundraising appropriately, different charities should consider what processes and procedures they may need in place. Charities may want to develop their own internal guidance on this area and consider how to ensure that their fundraisers are appropriately trained and supported.” Medaille Trust has clear safeguarding and vulnerable person’s policies to which all staff must adhere and these are followed within all fundraising practices.

Identifying vulnerable people

By ‘a vulnerable adult’, we mean those people who are lacking the ability, either temporarily or permanently, to make an informed decision about donating money to The Medaille Trust. There are a number of factors which can contribute to vulnerability. Examples of indicators which could mean that an individual is in a vulnerable circumstance or needs additional support could include: 

  • Mental illness and mental capacity concerns (both permanent and temporary conditions), including dementia and personality disorders
  • Significant physical illness
  • Physical and sensory disability
  • Learning difficulties
  • Times of stress or anxiety (e.g. bereavement, redundancy)
  • Financial vulnerability (where a gift from a donor may impact on their ability to sufficiently care for themselves or leave them in financial hardship)
  • Language barriers
  • Influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Where people live (for example, in supported housing).

It is not feasible to provide a comprehensive set of factors or characteristics which would enable fundraisers to always identify an individual who is in vulnerable circumstances.  We therefore follow the guidance on indicators of vulnerability, laid down by the Institute of Fundraising. This guidance includes:

Indicators that an individual appears confused, such as:  

  • Asking irrelevant and unrelated questions
  • Responding in an irrational way to questions
  • Saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’ at times when it is clear they haven’t understood the meaning of what is being discussed.

Indicators that the individual may have physical difficulties, such as:

  • Unable to hear and understand what is being said
  • Unable to read and understand the information they are provided with
  • Displaying signs of ill-health like breathlessness or signs of exasperation or discontent.

Indicative statements that suggest a lack of mental capacity, such as:

  • Saying ‘I don’t usually do things like this, my husband/wife son/daughter takes care of it for me’
  • Having trouble remembering relevant information, for example forgetting that they are already a regular donor to that charity (e.g. have an existing Direct Debit), or have recently donated.

Written communications

We can at times identify vulnerable adults through written communications:

  • A supporter who has emailed or written to us to tell us they are permanently vulnerable (see earlier definitions)
  • Letters we receive from people where their thoughts and wishes are not clear or consistent.  

Family members / carers

We may also be alerted to a supporter being vulnerable by a family member or carer. Where we have been given this information we act upon this, by asking the supporter what kind of communication, if any, is acceptable. 

What we do if we suspect a supporter is vulnerable

We follow the Institute of Fundraising guidance if we suspect that a donor lacks the capacity to make a decision about the donation which states that “a donation should not be taken. If after the donation is taken the charity receives evidence that the person lacked capacity to make the decision to donate, then the charity can and should return the donation because the original donation was invalid. … If a donor is found to lack capacity, the organisation should put in place measures to ensure that donations are not solicited from them in the future.”

If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact us via enquires@medaille-trust.org.uk or in Writing to Medaille Trust The Medaille Trust Cathedral Centre 3 Ford Street Salford M3 6DP

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